US

Oklahoma inmate dies after being hit with pepper balls

An autopsy report shows an inmate who died at an Oklahoma jail was hit more than a dozen times by pepper balls as officers tried to subdue him.

Charlton Cash Chrisman, 40, died last month after two altercations with officers at the Oklahoma County jail, The Oklahoman reported.

The autopsy report lists the probable cause of death as "agitated delirium due to acute methamphetamine intoxication." The report also notes "multiple pepper ball injuries" contributed to his death, but it says the manner of death is unknown.

An ongoing investigation could result in criminal charges.

According to a report from a sheriff's captain, Chrisman ran toward the officers when his cell door was opened.

"The pepper ball guns were deployed and were ineffective," the captain wrote, adding that a spray and "open hands" were then used to control the inmate.

The autopsy found 14 to 16 circular contusions consistent with a pepper ball on the body, forehead, cheeks, nose, arms, legs and back.

Chrisman was arrested April 18, one day before his death, after crashing his truck into the emergency room of an Oklahoma City hospital. Authorities said Chrisman "exited the vehicle and began shouting someone was trying to kill him and they had poisoned his drink." Records show Chrisman had a history of drug abuse and mental health issues.

Chrisman's mother has taken the first step in legal action against the county by filing a probate case. Her son was the 20th inmate since January 2016 to die in Oklahoma County.

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Information from: The Oklahoman, http://www.newsok.com